Why do tech companies avoid the Midwest?
I work as a software engineer for a startup company in the northern part of the Midwestern U.S. I make about $80K/year, with benefits, which may seem small... but honestly it's plenty.
I have my student loans paid off. I have my car and motorcycle paid off. I own a 3-bedroom home, with a fenced in yard where the animals can play, and which is only a 20-minute commute from the office. I'm lazy so instead of cooking I end up eating out a lot. And I still have money left over each month for dates, entertainment, and recreation. In other words (especially when compared with California), the cost of living is extremely low, and life is good. I would never in a million years sacrifice what I've got going here to go out west to Silicon Valley. I would certainly make a lot more there but my quality of life would almost certainly go way down.
So why aren't more tech companies setting up offices in the Midwest? The cost of living is so low here. For companies like Google, Microsoft, Facebook, it would cost them very little, comparatively. In the Midwest you don't need a $400K salary to survive; you can live comfortably with only $80K. Those companies could get away with paying a lot less here and nobody would complain. Why do the major players stay away?